Olufemi Aduwo is the national coordinator of a coalition of 45 civil society group under the umbrella of Rights Monitoring Group (RMG) and was the only civil society leader from Nigeria that attended the just concluded World Bank/IMF Boards of Governors meetings held in Washington DC. In this interview with DARE ADEKANMBI, he speaks on preparations for the 2015 elections and the political parties, among other issues. Excerpts:
THERE is doubt in some quarters about the preparedness of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC). In states where the permanent voter cards have been distributed, not all registered voters have got their cards and many had to register again when their names were found missing on the register. Do you share in the doubt about INEC preparations for 2015 elections?
I have been with the INEC to the United States, United Kingdom and a couple of other places to observe elections. So, I have been very close to the commission . When Professor Attahiru Jega announced the need for new pooling units, it became a kind of issue. But, some of us who are aware of the overwhelming problem INEC is facing, know the new units are necessary and a welcome development. But like every other issue, it has become politicised. The Electoral Law stipulates that each polling unit must not have more than 500 voters. In some units, there are clusters with each having more than 2,000 voters. Not only that, the issue of proper delineation has come into focus too. For example in Lagos, the total human population in Lagos West Senatorial District is larger than the figure for Lagos East and Lagos Central. This is abnormal. When INEC said it wanted to do proper delineation that would remove some local government councils from A to B, all these politicians and some stakeholders and even royal fathers who benefit this inequality stood against INEC. SEE MORE ON PAGE 2